Conspiracy theories don’t usually amount to much, but they’re more fun than eating vegetables, going to a wine bar, or listening to Wayne Hagin. And reader Ben Ross has come up with a really good one regarding all the Day-Glo trim on the new Nikegon uniform. I’ll let him explain:
Start by going to the home page of Nike.com. Look at the initial banner photo of the Nike Football Media Summit, and then look at the thumbnail photos for NikeStore, Nike6.0, and NikeFootball. One color seems to be a theme throughout all of these: neon yellow-green.
Meanwhile, they’re releasing Kobe’s new signature shoe, the Kobe VI, on Dec. 25 (when the Lakers play the Heat). Instead of sporting the Lakers’ usual purple and gold, the new shoe will feature a certain Grinch-ish hue.
And look at most of Europe’s top Nike-sponsored soccer players. Most of them have these on their feet.
And guess which color keeps on popping up in Nike’s Sparq collection. [Indeed, look what happens if you move your cursor over the "English" tab on this page, then move your cursor over "USA" or "England," and then see what you get when you click on one of them. -- PL]
It seems as everything Nike these days is touched with a tinge of this neon yellow-green, leading me to believe that the Oregon uniform is just another way for them to plug unity among their different shoe/clothing lines.
Persuasive, no? Kinda makes you wonder why they didn’t go with this look for the national championship game. (Whatever the merits of that design, it’s a great concept and an even better execution — my compliments to the chef.)
A few thoughts here:
• One of my biggest gripes about Nike, going back to the early 2000s, is that the team brand inevitably becomes subordinate to the corporate brand. In other words, Nike-outfitted teams tend to have their visual identities subsumed, Borg-like, into the larger identity of Team Nike. That’s what the orange sleeves were all about in 2005, it’s what the System of Dress was about in 2007, it’s what Amateur Armistice is about now, and it appears to be what the Day-Glo thing is about too. So those poor saps at Oregon are getting played: They don’t even get to look uniquely stupid — instead they’re just one small part of a giant stupid agenda. The whole thing reflects a nauseating degree of corporate hubris.
• If the Day-Glo program is still unfolding by the fall of 2012, it seems safe to say that the folks in Beaverton are gonna have a fucking field day with the Seahawks.
• This could create the biggest synergy between football and office products since Terrell Owens pulled out that Sharpie in 2002.
Meanwhile, if you don’t recognize today’s headline, the source can be found below (for the uninitiated, here are the lyrics, since you probably won’t be able to make out the nuances of Poly Styrene’s caterwauling):
I’ll go on record with this right now: If Nike uses X-Ray Spex in a commercial, all is forgiven.
(Special thanks to Phil for the Day-Glo swoosh.)
Bucco Beauties: Did you catch Game 7 of the 1960 World Series on MLB Network last night? Pretty cool stuff, right? Even cooler, Nathan Long just sent along shots of some spectacular old Robert Riger illustrations from the ’60 Series. “I originally came across them when cleaning out the attic of a bar that my mother purchased a couple of years ago,” says Nathan. “In addition to the art pieces, there were numerous original newspaper clippings from the Pirates and Steelers, including some interesting caricatures.”
And while we’re at it, this is a good time to take another look at all the great 1960 Pirates color screen shots that Larry Bodnovich has cobbled together. Magnificent.
Now closing in on 2000: We got a huge response yesterday morning after I mentioned that we were on the verge of getting our 1000th enrollee in the Uni Watch Membership Program. Over two dozen of you signed up in the space of four hours. That group included Brooks Baker, who turned out to be the 1000th member. He’ll be getting a special membership card that may look like the one you see at right (or it may not — Scott and I are still working on finalizing the design).
We probably would’ve gotten even more sign-ups, but my Amazon Payments account started getting wonky around noontime. Several people told me that they tried to e-pay their membership fee but got an error message: “This account cannot receive payments at this time,” or something like that. I spent a ridiculous amount of time on the phone yesterday with Amazon but couldn’t get a definitive answer or solution. (And in case you’re wondering, Brooks had already become the 1000th member about 20 minutes before the Amazon trouble started, so nobody got cheated on that front.)
I know the Amazon account is now working for at least some people, because I’ve had a few folks send me test payments, and they’ve gone through okay, so I’m hoping the problem may have fixed itself. If you get an error message when try to sign up for a membership (or when buying a Meats T-shirt, which is another project where I depend on Amazon Payments), please do two things: (1) Send me an e-mail to let me know that you’re having a problem, and (2) if you know how to make a screen shot (command-shift-3 on a Mac), please make a shot of the error message and send it to me. Thanks.
Uni Watch News Ticker: In yesterday’s ESPN column, I quoted Auburn assistant A.D. Tim Jackson saying that the Tigers once wore an orange jersey against Georgia, got creamed, and that was the end of Auburn ever wearing an alternate uniform. I didn’t have a photo of that game, but I do now, thanks to Scott Hughes. “Keep in mind that James Brooks, the running back in that photo, is wearing a tearaway jersey, so it didn’t include the godawful navy and white sleeve stripes that everyone else was wearing,” he says. If anyone has more pics that show the full sleeve-striped effect, I’d love to see. … Update: Gordon Harvey just sent me this. Well done! … I neglected to mention yesterday that the Magic wore their black alt for the first time on Tuesday night. … Oh wow, these old posters are magnificent. They’re from Mike Hersh‘s latest rundown of old sports posters. … … You all know how I love meat. So you can imagine how stunned I was when I saw this video clip about a robotic butcher (thanks, Kirsten). … Russell Martin’s unusual NOB appears to be DOA, because he’s reportedly joining Team NNOB. … Question: Are the Nets slated to become the Brooklyn New Yorkers? Answer: No. I have been told by an NBA source what the Nets will be called when they move
a few stinking blocks from my house to Brooklyn, and while I’m not at liberty to disclose what the team name will be, I can affirm that it is definitely not the New Yorkers. Trust me on this one. … Quick, what’s wrong with this logo? Answer: The hypocycloid colors are wrong (good catch by Jeff Flynn Jr.). … The Columbus Astros, a minor league team in Columbus, Georgia, appear to have worn a completely differently version of Houston’s shooting star design (cool find by Paul Wiederecht). … I think most of the “ice girl” outfits around the NHL are embarrassingly tacky. Actually, the whole concept of “ice girls” is rather tacky. But these new Oilers cheerleading outfits — those aren’t tacky at all. They’re pretty awesome, in fact. … A contestant on The Price Is Right yesterday was wearing a DIY Seattle Sounders jersey, made with glitter and sewn-on stripes. “As I’m sure you’re aware, Price Is Right host Drew Carey is a part owner of the Sounders,” says Scott Davis. … Reebok is working with MIT to produce electronics-enhanced fabric (with thanks to Tom Mulgrew). … Here’s a great article about the old New York Americans — the first team to play hockey at Madison Square Garden — complete with an awesome photo (with thanks to Alan Kreit). … Here’s a dubious record: a billboard with 1233 different logos on it (interesting find by Stu Taylor). … Dozens of members of the Russian military have ended up sick or hospitalized because their new uniforms can’t hold up to the winter cold. … Wow, that’s one miserable basketball uniform. The team in white is Caltech, but Greg Plefka, who sent me the photo, doesn’t know who’s wearing the orange, and neither do I. Anyone..? … “Interesting rugby memorial idea in New Zealand,” writes Caleb Borchers. “The Crusaders will play their first home game of the Super 15 wearing the jersey of the club most closely connected to the miners who died in NZ.” … Sad news about Bob Feller, who was still wearing picture-perfect pants and stirrups as recently as 2008. RIP (big thanks to Mike Edgerley).
Ho ho ho: I don’t know about you, but after three straight days of writing about Nikegon, I could use a bath. We’ll turn to more pleasurable pursuits tomorrow, as I’ll have the annual reader-appreciation raffle. See you then.